Airborne Engineers Association

Roll of Honour



Lt Col (Retd) Paul Scoble, 16th April 1933 – 11th January 2019

Sadly the Association has lost another veteran, at the grand old age of 86 years old. I do not have access to his military record, and thus can only write about the man I first knew way back in 1970 at the JLR RE, Old Park Barracks, Dover. When I reported for duty at the JLR, I did not have the 'edge' that most others had, by having relatives with past military experience, in fact I did not even know the basics of the rank structure! So meeting this extremely smart, outstandingly fit and very scary SSM with an 'air of grace about him' set the mould for Junior Spr Ferry.

I along with thousands of others served in the 'Junior Leaders' and his job was to mould us into those potential leaders, and boy, did he make sure you worked hard, played hard and also had fun at the same time. His management skills were second to none, and wow betide any training NCO who overstepped the mark on their role at the JL Regt.

I remember a few times I 'had to be educated' by the SSM, resulting in me being told to report to his office in A Sqn block. I stood perfectly at the Ease Position' note Ease and not 'Easy Position' outside his office waiting my call to march in. After what seemed like and entire age, he called me in, and by this time I was physically sweating with fear. It was something to do with me not volunteering to join the regimental cross-country team, and like an idiot, I replied nobody has asked me Sir', wrong answer Ferry! Anyway having just volunteered to join the team' I was told to march out, as I about turned, he ordered me to 'Stand Still' ! He said, your hair is that long Ferry, I can grow potatoes in that nut of yours, get out of my office and report back here within 20 minutes with your haircut, so off I ran! Less than 15 minutes later I stood outside his office with my freshly cut hair (that never needed cutting), again what seemed like ages. He came out of the office and told me to about turn, and swiftly screamed into my ear, I told you to get a haircut, telling me that the back of my neck hair was not to regulations now get away out of my sight and report back here in 20 minutes, so off I went again to the camp barber. We only got 10 Bob in cash per week, the remaining pay kept for block leave periods. So after my second haircut in just over an hour, I stood outside his office again, and eventually he came out for a second review.

Standing outside his office for the second time, he called me in and ordered me to about turn, stating that is better Ferry, now I am sure you understand the basics of obeying orders, so well done, and report outside in an hour in your PT kit as we are going for a small run! Little did I know that there were other JLs who were also being educated, as the PT Squad was fairly large! Paul was the fittest man I ever met in the Army, he never asked anyone to do something that he could not do himself.

The PT run was to select a squad for the regimental cross-country team, and on returning to barracks, he called me aside and said, Jnr Spr Ferry, you are in my team and shook my hand ! Now for a SSM to do that way back in the early seventies, was a rare event, and he had my utmost respect ever since, especially as he advised me to join the Parachute Sqn after a couple of years in 'man service'! Here was the scariest man I had ever known, advising me to join 9 Sqn, wow! I went of to 12 Fd Sqn in Osnabruck after training and hated sitting inside a glorified metal battle taxi, but stuck it for two years before applying to join 9 Sqn, remembering everything that SSM Scoble had taught me, as I passed the Bde ran Pre-Para and P Coy selection first time.

Eventually Paul was commissioned and returned back to 9 Sqn as the QM. It was not long before he called me up to his office, and memories of Dover came flooding back. He called me in, and shook my hand and said, how pleased he was to see me wearing a 'proper beret' and with a correct haircut! He had not forgotten!

The strangest thing happened years later, one day, when my wife and I were out running around Barton Stacey area, who passes us in a car, but said man Paul Scoble. He jumps out of his car and says, bloody hell Ferry, I thought I had seen the last of you, what are you doing here? When I told him we had bought a house in the village, he started laughing as so had he! I enjoyed meeting him around the village over the years, usually out whilst running. When I found out that he was seriously ill in hospital over Christmas time, I tracked him down to the ward in Winchester. By this time he was basically in a coma, and did not even know I had visited. I went in again the following day and met two of his daughters, telling them who I was and what part in my life he had played.

On the third visit, there were more of the family by the bedside, as they knew it was imminent that things were not going well. less than 3 hours after leaving his bedside on that visit, he passed away. I am sure most of you will know the story of the incident involving his time as a PSI with 300 Para Sqn in Radfan, resulting in the SSM and a RAPC Sgt being killed after an attack. I could go on for pages and pages on this fine example of an Airborne Warrior. Rest in Peace Sir, you were one of the best to have served with in the Army.

J J Ferry

Order of Service for the late Paul Scoble

Paul Scoble

Paul Woodley Scoble
Lieutenant Colonel (ret’d) Royal Engineers
16th April 1933 – 11th January 2019

St. John the Baptist Church
Wednesday 30th January 2019
1.30 pm

Paul Scoble
Paul Scoble

Music in - Bagpipes played by John Ferry
Welcome and Opening Prayer
Lord of all hopefulness
Lord of all hopefulness,
Lord of all joy,
whose trust, ever childlike,
no cares could destroy,
be there at our waking,
and give us, we pray,
your bliss in our hearts,
Lord, at the break of the day.

Lord of all eagerness,
Lord of all faith,
whose strong hands were skilled
at the plane and the lathe,
be there at our labours,
and give us, we pray,
your strength in our hearts, Lord,
at the noon of the day.

Lord of all kindliness,
Lord of all grace,
your hands swift to welcome,
your arms to embrace,
be there at our homing,
and give us, we pray,
your love in our hearts, Lord,
at the eve of the day.

Lord of all gentleness,
Lord of all calm,
whose voice is contentment,
whose presence is balm,
be there at our sleeping,
and give us, we pray,
your peace in our hearts, Lord,
at the end of the day.

read by Morgan Llewellyn

by Catherine and Duncan

I vow to thee, my country
I vow to thee, my country, all earthly things above,
Entire and whole and perfect, the service of my love;
The love that asks no question, the love that stands the test,
That lays upon the altar the dearest and the best;
The love that never falters, the love that pays the price,
The love that makes undaunted the final sacrifice.

And there’s another country, I’ve heard of long ago,
Most dear to them that love her, most great to them that know;
We may not count her armies, we may not see her King;
Her fortress is a faithful heart, her pride is suffering;
And soul by soul and silently her shining bounds increase,
And her ways are ways of gentleness and all her paths are peace.

Ian McGill

High Flight by J.G. Magee
read by Holly

Send In The Clowns by Frank Sinatra

concluding with
The Lords Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name; Thy kingdom come;
Thy will be done; On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
But deliver us from evil,
For thine is the kingdom the power
And the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Corps Collect
O God, whose righteousness is exceeding glorious, may it please
Thee to send out Thy Light and Thy Truth so to lead us Thy Servants
of the Corps of Royal Engineers that everywhere we may be enabled
to do our duty, and so may glorify Thee our Father in Heaven, for the
sake of Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.


And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England’s mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England’s pleasant pastures seen?
And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills:
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among those dark satanic mills:
Bring me my bow of burning gold!
Bring me my arrows of desire!
Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!
I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant land.


Last Post
played by John Plumbridge
followed by 2 minutes of silence

‘The Flowers of the Forest’
played by John Ferry

played by John Plumbridge


Music out
The Regimental March of the Royal Engineers
played by John Ferry




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